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Rocks And Debris Close Cave Trail After Major Storm

Timpanogos Cave National Monument

National Park News

A major storm with lightning, hail, and heavy rain swept across American Fork Canyon and Mount Timpanogos on the afternoon of Saturday, June 13th. Heavy rain poured down on the park and washed tons of rocks, gravel, and debris onto the cave trail. The trail was covered in six locations and rocks were scattered extensively elsewhere. Two of the piles were over six feet high and each covered 30 to 40 feet of trail. During the storm, a 15-year-old girl on the cave trail was hit in the head by a rock. She was able to get down the trail on her own and was transported to the hospital to receive stitches. Another visitor came from a nearby reservoir in the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest complaining of chest pains, and visitor center staff got a nearby paramedic team to respond. Eighteen staff members worked throughout Sunday to clear the tons rocks and debris from the cave trail. Several divisions were represented, but most were maintenance and interpretive staff. This was a great cooperative effort, with everyone remaining upbeat and positive while performing hard manual labor. Because of the larger rocks in the piles, they could not be shoveled easily. The piles had to be worked with picks to loosen the material before it could be shoveled off the trail. After a seven hour effort, the trail was finally opened to the public at 2 p.m.



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